Thursday, September 28, 2006

The Tables are Turned!

I got home early yesterday afternoon. So, I decided to do something a bit mindless: watch OPRAH!

So in the midst of discussion about 9/11 Widows, there was a promo for an upcoming OPRAH scheduled for Monday. It had all the ear marks of another sordid husband with a secret shows. I thought, "Man, is this another show on Gay Husbands?"

Well, let me tell you. I nearly dropped my popsicle when the topic was revealed....Gay WIVES! The promo ends with Oprah exclaiming something like, "In all my years, I've never heard of anything quite like this!"

It also shows the husbands with the wives.

It's gonna be interesting to watch. I mean, so many times gay husbands are portrayed by such programs as "Having their cake and eating it too!"...or "Using their wives as a cover."....or "Living a lie!" or "Cheating on their wives."....or "Exposing their wives to danger."

You get my drift.

So, I wonder if this program with gay wives will be introducing the same concepts....."Having their cake and eating it too!"...or "Using their husbands as a cover..." or "Living a lie!"....or "Cheating on their husbands."...or "Exposing their husbands to danger."

Somehow I expect this to not be the case. To those ladies reading this, I mean no disrespect, but...somehow I think this is going to be treated a lot more "sensitively"....for women to be will be treated differently....

Everyone knows that men are beasts....even ogres....evil ogres.

In the media...when talk centers around's always the man that is the problem. Men are never sensitive to women's needs. Women are the victims...never guilty.

This should be an interesting edition of OPRAH! I can hardly wait.

Check your local listings for Monday.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

To the Beach!

This weekend I get to spend away!


I'm going with a dear friend to close up his beach house for the season. It's always fun to go there and check out the boardwalk and watch the waves...feel the sand between my toes!

I also have this thing about antique/junk stores.

There are plenty of those to visit.

There are good places to eat.'s now off season. So, the crowds have all gone home!



Even we gay guys worry.

Right now I'm worried about MSM.

He phoned yesterday all upset. He had an accident yesterday on his way back to his base. His right front rim came off his car and rolled into a cornfield.

He was in the middle of nowhere. He called his dad for help. And, I did. I helped him to calm down. I helped him to focus and to come up with a plan. He hadn't paid his insurance. I helped him with that.

He called his mom...and she chewed him out for nearly burning down her house.

I worry about Lovey too. At times she gets so self-absorbed, she forgets to offer comfort or gentleness to others.

She got a little miffed yesterday at her niece. Her niece is getting married soon. The niece, a bit flighty, has already changed the date 3 times. As of this writing, it is scheduled for right after the holidays somewhere in Mexico.

All the family is asking "Why Mexico?" No answers are forthcoming. Niece's fiance was firm..."It's in Mexico, end of discussion."

By the sounds of it, it appears that finace is a bit of a controller, which won't bode too well with all the other controllers in our family. His warm family welcome appears to be chilling a bit. Hmmmm.

The one thing we all are sure of is that we're all invited to attend!

Lovey approached flighty niece and said, "Who is marrying you?"

Niece responded sweetly, "Oh we'll get some mexican preacher to do it."

Lovey then asked, and I knew this was coming, "Do you want me to do it."

Niece answered flatly, "No!"

So Lovey is miffed. She mumbled something about how the niece is going to a church that is against women preachers, blah...blah.

Poor Lovey.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006


Learned an interesting bit of trivia yesterday.

My son, the marine (MSM), slightly rearranged another marines face with his fist a couple of weeks ago. The way the story goes, MSM was protecting a buddy from a threatening situation. So, in the process, MSM injured his right hand pretty badly. It was so bad in fact, that he had to have surgery on the hand last week.

Being the resourceful one that he is though, he decided to take convalescent leave, and go visit his mom, Lovey. I've not gotten a full scale report on how that went...I really can't wait to hear because Lovey is terribly fearful of MSM. Whenever they've been together, they tend to fight like cats and dogs.

This is putting it mildly.

So, for him to spend a week with her in the middle of no where is an achievement.

As of this writing they are both still alive. At least, to my knowledge, neither one tried to kill the other.

Or did they?

MSM like to smoke -- a lot. So, he smoked outside his mother's home...and he threw the cigarette butts on her flower beds just outside the front door -- the ones with mulch. The ones with flammable mulch.

So, after he left to return home...and she was leaving to stay at her mother's this weekend, she saw two different plumes of smoke...and two growing flames, just ouside her front door. Thankfully she was able to turn on the hose and put out the fires.

And, I learned, she has not bothered to get contents insurance on her house.

Typical Lovey...

Monday, September 25, 2006

Shoes and things (again)!

Hit a bump in the road over the weekend.

I had been feeling rather smug about the progress that I had been making. I was actually beginning to feel like the old Frank in a rather major way.

The house is taking on my personality. It's beginning to feel elegant in a kind of warm way. Even #1 has been saying over and over again how nice the place is looking and how excited she is. This has made me feel better than anything within the past 25 years.

You see, the house used to be always in such disarray, that the kids could never have friends in...or throw parties, etc. All that has changed. Already, #1 and I have figured out 3 big events we will host in the next little while: 1) we'll have a house warming open house; 2) we'll have a Christmas open house; and, 3) we have #1's farewell party here when she leaves for the Peace Corps in a few months.

It is so cool to know that the house is mine....and that it is clean.....and free from clutter.

Got rid of another curb full of junk....this weekend. Also, filled up carload #3 to send back to LOVEY. ICK.

With all the positive things, the bump happened.

Lovey is staying at her mom's this weekend until Wednesday. So, it was a natural thing for #1 to spend some time with her.

However, upon her return, I learned more about her mom than I ever really wanted to know. It only confirmed to me what I have beens aying all along. The woman has issues....TGT was not what did our marriage in.....we're back to "control"...."wooden spoons" and the like. And the shoes....we're back to the shoes.

What is it about shoes? She thinks I wouldn't let her buy shoes...... Yet, in the various journal entries that #1 and I have run across in the cleaning of the house: she makes big elaborate entries....and then she mentions that she bought shoes that day!

She told #1 that she had a credit car of her own when they were little...and that she maxed it out by buying....yup, you guessed it, shoes for them. It would be laughable, if it weren't so sad....and scary.

And that's not all.... by the sounds of it....I was just an awful husband. She has now taken on the role of martyr....

I suppose in order to justify her actions....and to make herself look good and not so crazy, she tries to demonize me. And she is trashing me and my reputation in the process.

It's all very sad.

To think that I have wasted nearly 25 years and gallons of tears on her....all for this.

I confessed to #1 that although her mom wants me to remain in her life "like a brother," I don't think I want to keep her or her family in my life.

#1 said that she understood why.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

The Quirks of Lovey

Separation and this silly divorce certainly have provided time and distance away from Lovey.

It's also VERY interesting to see her from a different perspective.


From a great distance.

She's coming back this weekend to stay at her mother's, while her mother is away in Colorado. She's going to be here from Friday THROUGH Tuesday.

Since June 20, she has averaged being at her mother's about every 2-3 weeks. This trip is a bit strange because she has gotten someone to preach for her. So, she is taking Sunday off!

From her churches.

This is the woman who could think of nothing more than pastoring her church -- of being in ministry full time -- of preaching -- of singing.

It just strikes me as rather odd.

I pointed all this out to #1. #1 sometimes gets defensive about her mother and I mostly steer clear of the subject as much as possible. But...this time....I had to push the stick in a bit further.

"Gee, #1, your mom sure does come up here an awful lot."

"Dad," she retorted. "Mom is lonely. AND, she only comes up here when she has to visit her psychiatrist or has other medical appointments."

"Hmmm," I replied. "She's not coming up for medical appointments this time. God help her if the bishop had placed her a lot further away than where she is now!"

"Grandma thinks Mom will move away."

"Oh," I said. "She's already looking forward to her new church in three years."

"No, Dad, Grandma thinks she'll move to Colorado!"


Wednesday, September 20, 2006

A Letter from MP

Dear Frank,

I apologize for not responding to your heartfelt email before now. However, I've been out of town attending to the details related to the death of a close family member.

I am writing this to you in longhand to let you know how important this matter is to me. I am sincerely sorry for not having been in touch with you during your separation. All I can say is that we dropped the ball -- plain and simple. I can make all kinds of excuses as to the fact that I was deployed on temporary military duty...or that the associate was giving birth...etc. But, the main point is that we dropped the ball, and there is nothing more that I can say.

The only thing that I can say is that I sincerely want to connect with you: spend some time with you and to get to know you better. I also hope that in the process that you will give me and the church and the entire staff another chance to be there for you. The church loves you and has missed you. Please give us the opportunity to make things right.

We haven't taken sides in this matter. That's simply not something we do. I assure you.

I sincerely am sorry for the pain you have had to bear and hope that you will be open to giving me another chance.

I will be calling you in a few days to schedule a time where we can meet for lunch or dinner.

I look forward to getting to know you.




I honestly don’t mean to leave you all hanging…and I fully intend to print the full text of MP’s letter to me. However, I came into the office and forgot to have it with me. I’ll publish it this evening!

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Could It Be That Things Are Beginning to Look Up?

I received notice this week that one of my all time favorite male Christian Vocalists was going to be holding a concert at my old church this past Saturday. I looked at #2 and said, "We gotta go!" So it all worked out that a friend from church couldn't go, and he gave me his two tickets.

Keep in mind that this was the church that so warmly embraced "Lovey"...and where I became invisible. Few people contacted me. I was so bitter and angry at them. Most of all I was angry at my pastor (MP). He was the subject of an earlier post. (See "Fat, Old, and Cranky") If you've read that posting, you'll note that I sent him a heartfelt and impassioned email about how I felt about things. To date, I had not heard from him.

So, I was a bit intimidated about showing up at church. After all, since folks were so apparently entranced by Lovey's presence and her obvious spirituality, what would they think of me, the lowly queer, Frank?

I decided to find out!

So #2 and I went to the concert and we got there early.

I was practically mobbed by folks.

Even by people I didn't know.

All of them saying how much they had missed me. Was I back? How have I been? Am I okay?

I was a bit overwhelmed...

Then he appeared. MP!

He had a "deer in the headlights" look about him. He approached rather haltingly and reached out his hand. "How are you?", he slightly faltered. "I am fine," I said warmly and pleasantly. (I was amazed at my own sincerity!)

"I'm glad," he continued. "Did you get my letter?" he asked.

"No," I answered a bit surprised. "Where did you send it...?" and then I recited my myriads of email addresses.... "I didn't email..I sent it to the home address I have on file for you."

"Ah...I haven't seen it....but I will look for it when I get home."

So, with that, I went to the concert.

The music was fantastic...and seeing the people at church...smiling warmly at me...and showing genuine compassion and warmth to me brought me to tears.

I got home very late, but #2 and I went through all the mail we had received during the past week. Saw absoulutely nothing from the church. Then we picked up a catalog that was marked for the trash heap.....and there stuck into page 47 was a small cream envelope.....hand addressed, with the church parsonage's return address. The postman evidently had put some small pieces of mail inside periodicals and catalogs and they are easily missed.

I sat down in my easy chair....and opened the envelope.

It was amazing....

Friday, September 15, 2006

A Silver Anniversary

December 12, 2006 will be my 25th Wedding Anniversary! So, in honor of that auspicious occasion, I want to do something outlandish! I want do do something just for me!

What should it be?

What would you do given my situation?

Drop me a line at and tell me!

Another Week Grinds to an End!

I really must apologize to all of you out there. I've not been the world's best blogger of late. And, it's readership is down.....I'm down....UGH!

My downness is medically diabetes does things to my emotional state....and the fact that fall is fast upon us does not help. I'm a spring/summer person.....fall and winter just do not do it for me.

#1 has been quite a trooper at my house. Yesterday I walked in and found that she had painted the main bathroom. She and I had been discussing the possibility of doing that since we had paint from a friend that was used to do her room....and a lot of it was left over...and the bathroom is not huge. So there it stood in all of its glory....pale yellow....

It's amazing what a coat of new paint will do to something. It changes the entire atmosphere of the room. It certainly did it to her bedroom. We also invested in ton of plantation blinds....bright white ones....and took down those yucky shears in the living room....and the old venetian blinds out of her room. The character of both places has changed! Immensely.

I'm so proud of the house.

It's beginning to take on my personality.

I have a three day weekend ahead of me....and I have lots planned. The salvation army-like group is coming to pick up junk tomorrow. I have to have it on my stoop by 7am. will be gone.

I'm putting out the old Christmas Tree.....and old wall hangings that "Lovey" rescued from the trash a long time ago...and anything else that I can get out there...depending on my energy levels!

Then, I plan to clean out the room that will become my office....where I can sit and write....and contemplate my existence. I've begun a manuscript for a book and will add to it and maybe reorganize it a bit. Then, on top of that, I'll use this blog as a resource. Plus, there's a lot of stuff I have not shared with anyone, anyplace. So, it promises to be juicy. **wink**

Monday, my dining room furniture officially arrives. So, once that is in place....and my pictures get hung.....I plan to take some tasteful interior shots of my entire house....and let you see the before and after!

By the end of October, I plan to make my final purchase...and it will be all done! I won't need another thing! I'm going to buy a 65-inch DLP television for the recreation room. That way I can enjoy my love of movies in an almost movie-like setting! AND...I can have company over for film nights. (Since I have a full collection of gay themed motion pictures, I plan to have a monthly get together for my gay married men's group...)

So, there.

I have survived June 20!

I've survived the flood of 2006 which happened only five days after Lovey basement was ruined......the furniture there was ruined.....boxes of stuff was ruined! UGH.

I've survived separation....

I've survived Lovey!

And here I am like the little pink Eveready Bunny....I keep going....and going....and going....and going....

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Negotiations Continue

It has been a while since I last wrote, and I do apologize. It has been a very busy time at my house, and so I’ve been purely focusing on those items.

Yesterday I went to see a gastroenterologist. In view of my mother’s colon cancer, and also given the fact that a cousin of mine just died at age 36 from gastric problems, I thought that I had better go and schedule a colonoscopy. So, I went yesterday for the consult…and given my family’s history, and the fact that I have been having heartburn, they also want to do an endoscopy.

What fun!

The big day is October 5 at 7:00 a.m.

I would appreciate your positive thoughts and prayers.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, I responded to Lovey’s demands for more alimony:

Keep in mind that alimony, in our state, is primarily used for housing expenditures i.e., mortgage, rent, etc. which is particularly appropriate when the other spouse has not had a career (like being a stay at home spouse), has no educational credentials or advanced degrees and has no skills that would mean they would have to enter the job market at an older age and where career prospects are dim. While I understand your concerns about buying a home when you retire, etc., remember that you will be having social security income, your pension from the church, your pension from your law firm, your pension from your last job -- 20 years from now. All those investments will grow exponentially over the next 20 years. Further, consider the fact that your salary will continue to increase during the time that you choose to pastor. Heck, with your educational credentials alone, you could branch out and get a teaching career on top of everything else....or become an adjunct professor somewhere. Finally, your childhood home will continue to increase in value over the long term. This is like money in the bank. For example, one website sets the value at $655,404. Your gross share of that would be $163,851. A hunk of this alone would make a dandy downpayment on a house anywhere!

Given all this PLUS the settlement from your interest in our home, coupled with the fact that you'll be receiving 1/2 of my retirement, plus any cash inheritance left over from your Dad AND your Mom, I'm not sure that you really have anything to worry about in terms of security in the future. In fact, your future is a whole lot more solid than mine will ever be.

Consider this:

Were I to retire right now with 28 years of service....I could look at receiving approximately $42,000 per year.... As it is currently written in your separation agreement, you would get around $20,000 of this or more.....and if you expect me to pay the $6,000 survivor’s benefit out of that, I'm down to $14,000. Yes, I do have a house, but by the time I were to sell (I certainly couldn't keep it, I am not in a career that translates into a private sector job well…perhaps I could pick up a job at McDonalds maybe....or any event, the house would have to go)....and pay real estate commissions, and the like, I'd clear maybe $35,000 if I'm lucky. So, even with my TSP, and my 401(k), I can probably look at a retirement of approximately $50,000 per year. (This is a whole lot to show for a career in the federal service.) So, as you can see, I'm going to be working a VERY long time. (Does this now make sense as to why, earlier in our negotiations, I offered to leave my claim against your retirement in return for your leaving my civil service retirement alone?)

Given these facts, if we were to wind up in court (and I'm not wanting to spend any more money going that route if I can help it), I think you stand to lose a lot more. $900 per month, in your town, for living expenses, may appear excessive, especially when you pay no housing costs for your primary residence OR the fact that you earn in excess of $30K plus funerals and weddings, etc.

She responded:

Frank, I have had to dip deeply into the money I received from transferring the house to your name, so that money is not certain for my future. I am not guaranteed a lot of extra money from weddings and funerals –pastors in my denomination do not ask for honoraria for doing these services for members, and I don’t have time for a side business for non-members. I am not as likely as a man to “make it to the top” of the denominational pay scale in the next 20 years, especially since 3 of those years are as a probationary member in two churches that rely on fund raisers just to meet their operating budgets. I don’t have any desire to teach as an adjunct professor (no time), and I would need to get my D.Min. degree first (a master’s degree is not enough) – which I have to pay full fare for, and that won’t be cheap! Finally, please don’t try to figure out what my inheritance will be from my Mom – I’d rather have her any day than the material gain her death might bring. She may need to sell her home at some point in order to be in an assisted living facility, and that situation could greatly reduce or even wipe out any inheritance we daughters might receive, so I cannot afford to count on that.

My final response:

Please don't think that all I'm doing is sitting back trying to calculate your inheritance and counting on your mother's demise. NEVER, NEVER, NEVER. I, like you, want her around for MANY years to come. All I was trying to do is to see beyond the current constraints....and to get you to see that you have far to go....and don't underestimate yourself. Most of all, your security should not revovle around me, your ex. I've gone about as far as I can.... BUT...lookat the various roles that women clergy have assumed in the denominational hierarchy. Don't sell yourself short. Your career prospects are much brighter than mine, and what you think.

No further discussion…

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

A Letter from Lovey!

She actually wrote me a letter!

An old fashioned, typewritten, folded, enveloped licked, postage paid, postage delivered LETTER!

And you know what she said?

She wants her alimony to start...and the agreement signed.....PRONTO!

Let's review!

I turned the agreement around last year PRONTO, and she has had my draft for nearly a year without anything further happening.

So now, I have had her new/old version for almost 4 weeks....waiting for my attorney to return from vacation.....and she is pushing to move things along.


She has now increased her amount of alimony requested by two hundred dollars per month!

I responded with an email that set forth my expenditures, and suggested that we might want to have alimony to start less and increase gently over the next how ever long it takes.... I also told her that even though I had thought she was getting her own automobile policy as stated in her letter, that I noted that it was still apearing on my insurance.

She sent me an email in letter this time.

"Yes, I’m still on your insurance. I made the effort to contact the insurance company and I spoke to them on August 22 to find out why I was still on your policy. Since I’m not receiving any other support from you – and I could really use it at this point – I guess I will stay on your policy for a while longer. Thanks for budgeting it in.

I’m having trouble getting the paperwork from the Conference Office for the medical –I don’t know why, but I need to call them AGAIN and ask for them to send it. (I was supposed to have it more than 2 weeks ago, but it hasn’t shown up in the mail.) However, without support I cannot afford the increased out of pocket expenses my own policy would pose right now (the plan is not as good as previously thought), so I’ll remain on your policy for the moment.

I realize that the separation agreement we marked up and discussed is different from the one we made edits to. I’m not sure what happened there, but it’s my attorney's version and I’d like to go with it. It’s just as thorough and legal as your attorney’s version, and since I had the first draft done, I’d like to keep to that format. (I’m just sorry you spent so much money having her write an entirely different agreement which said much of the same thing – had you initiated the separation, we would use your draft I am sure. Please mark it up and send it to me. As I said in my letter to you last week, I’m all for you and me going over it before it goes back to the attorneys. I really would like to get everything over and done with.

Concerning alimony figures, I should ask for $900, which is half of what I am technically entitled to – that figure has to do with more than my mere monthly expenses – I will be 70 when I retire, and I have no property/home to retire in, and I have to do something about that in the next few years.) I have not asked for an unreasonable amount (if we have to take this to court, which I would rather avoid, I could end up getting a larger sum, but I would not be awarded less)..."



Stay tuned...

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Random Ideas...

I can't help but think that somehow we married gay men live in a netherworld.

Simply put: damned if you do.....damned if you don't....

Let me explain.

Typically we get married at a young age -- with little life experience....or the concepts of how to deal with major life decisions. It all comes through trial and error and time.

So why is it then that because we choose to marry because we believe the lie that we can change.....and sadly when it turns out that we can't......and we come out......somehow we're the villain? Or that....we somehow deceived someone?

Perhaps it was deception on some level.

I was deceived by society.....and by the church.....that I could get married and things would straighten themselves out.

I came out to Lovey to be order to have some help with this issue that I had dealt with so long.

Somehow I didn't receive that support.....and I think I wound up giving the her and to her ministry....and to the children.

The no physical intimacy part was Lovey's idea.....her bit to "replenish the earth" as she so eloquently put it.....was done.


Here I am.....almost 50.....working to navigate the waters of gayness by myself...... However, I have many years of marriage, of child rearing.....of draw from.

I just wish I was about 30 years younger...where I could have made more informed choices.......not based on societal or church demands. Wife of Another Gay Man......I do value your insights....please keep reading...and keep posting your comments!

Saturday, September 02, 2006

Living a Lie?

A reader of this blog writes:

My dear Frank
Where was the love/acceptance/willingness to learn and understand?
Lovey stayed with you, essentially living a lie, for 25 years!! THAT was the measure of her enormous love for you.
Finally, as most of us do, she had enough and got out. Like us, she probably yearns for an intimate relationship with a straight man; she may be grieving for 25 'lost' years trying to fight tgt (a fight she could never win because as you know tgt never goes away - it's not a choice).

BTW has it occurred to you that your friend's 'accepting' wife may not have a choice? Women in their 60s don't usually have the financial resources to leave.

Don't continue to be 'friends' with Lovey & her family. Let her go. Let her move on. In this way you will be able to move on too.


Whatever happened to the concept of the marriage vows that state: "...for better and for worse"?

As I read the above post to my blog, I couldn't help but feel like this reader thinks that I was out every night of the week having indescriminate sex and ignoring my wife! or maybe somehow the very fact that I was a living and breathing gay man, I was somehow mistreating my wife. She thinks that by the fact that Lovey stuck by me for 25 years that it was a sign of great love......that all we had was a 25 year old lie.

I then ask, where's the lie? What was the lie?

Was the lie the fact that I couldn't have an intimate relationship with her?

Was the lie the fact that I did my best to compensate for that in all other ways?

Was the lie the fact that I denied myself in order to make her happy?

Was the lie the fact that there were 8 siginificant deaths in my family during those 25 years, and not once did she go with me to a funeral.....or attend a family reunion......or spend time with the kids........or go on family vacations.......was that the lie?

Was the lie the fact that she always put her ministry first? To always be doing something else when the kids needed her....or wanted her....and now...she is paying the price by having adult children who don't want to have anything to do with her? They avoid contact with her....and her family if possible.

In the sex all that defines a marriage? Is that THE lie?

If so, then God help the straight man that becomes paralyzed and is unable to perform from the neck down!

I loved my wife deeply for 25 years. In spite of the gay spite of my secret spite of the secret wishes I had to have made other choices in my younger days...... I supported her totally as she struggled through her ministry.....through her many different positions......when she threw away a lucrative career.......took extensive paycuts......overspent.....etc..... I loved her unconditionally.

Some straight folks don't seem to "get it"....that although we may be gay....we still love....and have feelings for our wives.... those we have committed to. Some of us are willing to sacrifice a great deal to stay in a marriage to a woman.

So, did Lovey suffer in all those 25 years? I don't think so.

I sacrificed willingly.... I struggled to make ends meet. I struggled harder to keep the kids close to their mom.

In the end, I failed.

I'm gay. I couldn't have sex with my wife.

Where's the lie?